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Construction begins on new runway at Charlotte airport

The new runway is part of a $1 billion airfield renovation plan at Charlotte Douglas. Officials estimate it will open in 2027.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte Douglas International Airport broke ground on a new runway Friday, making another significant project under its Destination CLT upgrade plan

The new runway, which is scheduled to open in 2027, will allow for 20 additional arrivals and departures during peak hours in 2028. By 2033, airport officials expect that number to increase to 32 per hour. 

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“This is a special day for the City of Charlotte as we break ground on a new runway at our growing airport,” Mayor Vi Lyles said. “As one of the busiest airports in the world, CLT is a top economic driver for the State of North Carolina and this new runway will increase our operational productivity enabling additional flights while reducing our carbon footprint.”

The $1 billion project will boost airport operations with the addition of the 10,000-foot-long runway. It will be located west of Runway 18C/36C. It will include north and south end-around taxiways, giving planes arriving from the west the ability to move around the new runway and existing center runway. This reduces operating time and emissions while eliminating passenger wait times to the gate for deboarding. 

RELATED: New Charlotte airport overlook coming in 2024

Sen. Thom Tillis backed the project as part of a bipartisan infrastructure law that's already brought more than $75 million to Charlotte's airport. 

The new runway's taxiway project will require transportation officials to relocate a portion of West Boulevard between Piney Top Road and Byrum Drive. A new permanent overlook is expected to open in 2024 when the previous one was closed for north-end taxiway construction. 

WCNC Charlotte is always asking "where's the money?" If you need help, reach out to WCNC Charlotte by emailing money@wcnc.com.


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